Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date



Westview Press


Religious Studies


In this chapter, I will introduce Kristeva as a psychoanalytic theorist of religion, focusing on this theme of exile, displacement, or division. I will first describe Kristeva's life and career, locating her ideas within an intellectual and historical context-finding a home, as it were, for her theory of exile. Second, I will provide a description of Kristeva's psychoanalytic theory of subjectivity and society, noting briefly the relation of her work to the ideas of Sigmund Freud, Jacques Lacan, and the psychoanalytic object relations theorists. Third, I will discuss Kristeva's theory of religion, arguing that her project has been to retrace Freud's steps-indeed, to rewrite Freud's classic books on religion-from the perspective of her own psychoanalytic and linguistic readings of subjectivity and society.

Chapter of

Religion, Society, and Psychoanalysis: Readings in Contemporary Theory


Janet Liebman Jacobs
Donald Capps


All rights reserved. Reprinted with permission.

SCU Access Only

To access this paper, please log into or create an account in Scholar Commons using your email address.